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1.  Chemopreventive Efficacy of Ginger (Zingiber Officinale) in Ethionine Induced Rat Hepatocarcinogenesis 
Ginger (Zingiber officinale Rosco) is widely used in foods as a spice all around the world. It has been reported to have antioxidant and anticarcinogenic properties. We investigated the effect of ginger in ethionine induced rat hepatocarcinogenesis. Male Wistar rats were divided into 5 groups: group 1 and 2 served as controls and they received normal rat chow and olive oil respectively. Group 3 was fed with ginger oleoresin dissolved in olive oil at 100 mg/kg body wt. Group 4 was fed with choline deficient diet and 0.1% ethionine in drinking water (CDE diet), and group 5 received ginger with CDE diet. Blood samples were taken from the orbital sinus at 0 and 8 weeks of experiment for the determination of antioxidant enzymes, superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), catalase and lipid peroxidation end product, malondialdehyde (MDA). Rats were also killed at 8 weeks for the observation of liver tumor formation. CDE diet induced the formation of liver nodules in rats and increased SOD activity. However, it had no effect on catalase, GPx and MDA levels when compared to both controls at 8 weeks of experiment. When CDE rats were treated with ginger, the formation of liver tumour, SOD activity and MDA level reduced, catalase activity was increased but no change was observed for GPx activity when compared to CDE group. In conclusion, ginger supplementation suppressed liver carcinogenesis by scavenging the free radical formation, and by reducing lipid peroxidation.
PMCID: PMC2816532  PMID: 20162046
Choline deficient diet; Ethionine; Liver cancer; Ginger; Antioxidants; Lipid peroxidation
2.  Histological Studies of the Effects of Oral Administration of Aspilia Africana (Asteraceae) Leaf Extract on the Ovaries of Female Wistar Rats 
Histological studies of the effects of oral administration of extract of Aspilia africana, used in ethno medical practice in Africa for the management of various ailments, on the ovarian tissues of matured female Wistar rats were studied. The rats (n=24), average weight 182g were randomly assigned into two treatment (n=16) and a control (n=8) group. The rats in the treatment groups received 0.5g/kg and 1g/kg of aqueous extract of Aspilia africana orally through orogastric tube for fourteen days, while the control rats received equal volume of distilled water without the extract of Aspilia added. The rats were fed with growers' mash and were given water liberally. The rats were sacrificed on day fifteen of the experiment. The ovary was carefully dissected out and quickly fixed in 10% formal saline for routine histological study after H&E method. The histological findings indicated that the treated sections of the ovary showed cellular hypertrophy of the theca folliculi, distortion of the basement membrane, degenerative and atrophic changes in the oocyte and zona granulosa. There were marked vacuolations appearing in the stroma cells. These findings indicate that Aspilia africana consumption may probably have adverse effects on the ovaries by its deleterious effects on the oocytes and stroma cells of ovary of adult Wistar rats. It is recommended that further studies aimed at corroborating these observations be conducted.
PMCID: PMC2816531  PMID: 20162042
Aspilia africana; Histological effect; theca folliculi; oocyte; cellular hypertrophy; vacuolations; ovaries and Wistar rats
3.  Effects of Tephrosia Purpurea Aqueous Seed Extract on Blood Glucose and Antioxidant Enzyme Activities in Streptozotocin Induced Diabetic Rats 
The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of aqueous seed extract of Tephrosia purpurea (TpASet) on blood glucose and antioxidant status in streptozotocin induced diabetic rats. Hyperglycemia associated with an altered hexokinase and glucose-6-phosphatase activities, elevated lipid peroxidation, disturbed enzymatic [Superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GPx)] and non enzymatic [Glutathione, vitamin C and vitamin E] antioxidant status were observed in streptozotocin induced diabetic rats. Oral administration of “TpASet” at a dose of 600mg/kg body weight showed significant improvement in above mentioned parameters. Our results clearly indicate that “TpASet” has potent antihyperglycemic and antioxidant effects in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats and therefore further studies are warranted to isolate and characterize the bioactive principles from “TpASet”.
PMCID: PMC2816530  PMID: 20162045
Streptozotocin; Tephrosia purpurea; Antioxidants; Lipid peroxidation
4.  Protective Effects of Annona Muricata Linn. (Annonaceae) Leaf Aqueous Extract on Serum Lipid Profiles and Oxidative Stress in Hepatocytes of Streptozotocin-Treated Diabetic Rats 
Extracts from various morphological parts of Annona muricata Linn. (Annonaceae) are widely used medicinally in many parts of the world for the management, control and/or treatment of a plethora of human ailments, including diabetes mellitus (DM). The present study was undertaken to investigate the possible protective effects of A. muricata leaf aqueous extract (AME) in rat experimental paradigms of DM. The animals used were broadly divided into four (A, B, C and D) experimental groups. Group A rats served as ‘control’ animals and received distilled water in quantities equivalent to the administered volumes of AME and reference drugs' solutions intraperitoneally. Diabetes mellitus was induced in Groups B and C rats by intraperitoneal injections of streptozotocin (STZ, 70 mg kg−1). Group C rats were additionally treated with AME (100 mg kg−1 day−1, p.o.) as from day 3 post STZ injection, for four consecutive weeks. Group D rats received AME (100 mg kg−1 day−1 p.o.) only for four weeks. Post-euthanization, hepatic tissues were excised and processed biochemically for antioxidant enzymes and lipid profiles, such as catalase (CAT), reactive oxygen species (ROS), glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px), thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS), triglycerides (TG), total cholesterol (TC), high density lipoprotein (HDL) and low density lipoprotein (LDL), respectively. Treatment of Groups B and C rats with STZ (70 mg kg−1 i. p.) resulted in hyperglycaemia, hypoinsulinaemia, and increased TBARS, ROS, TC, TG and LDL levels. STZ treatment also significantly decreased (p<0.05) CAT, GSH, SOD, GSH-Px activities, and HDL levels. AME-treated Groups C and D rats showed significant decrease (p<0.05) in elevated blood glucose, ROS, TBARS, TC, TG and LDL. Furthermore, AME treatment significantly increased (p<0.05) antioxidant enzymes' activities, as well as serum insulin levels. The findings of this laboratory animal study suggest that A. muricata extract has a protective, beneficial effect on hepatic tissues subjected to STZ-induced oxidative stress, possibly by decreasing lipid peroxidation and indirectly enhancing production of insulin and endogenous antioxidants.
PMCID: PMC2816529  PMID: 20162039
Annona muricata leaf; Aqueous extract; Lipid profiles; Streptozotocin; Oxidative stress; Antioxidants
5.  Apoptosis Induction of Centella Asiatica on Human Breast Cancer Cells 
The present study evaluated the ability of methanolic extract of Centella asiatica (Linn) Urban (Umbelliferae) to induce apoptosis in different cancer cell lines. MCF-7 cells emerged as the most sensitive cell line for in vitro growth inhibitory activity. C. asiatica extract induced apoptosis in MCF-7 cells as indicated by nuclear condensation, increased annexin staining, loss of mitochondrial membrane potential and induction of DNA breaks identified by TUNEL reactivity. It is possible that the use of C. asiatica extract as a component in herbal medicines could be justifiable.
PMCID: PMC2816528  PMID: 20162036
Apoptosis; Cancer; Centella asiatica
6.  Protective Effects of Punica Granatum Seeds Extract Against Aging and Scopolamine Induced Cognitive Impairments in Mice 
Dementia is one of the age related mental problems and characteristic symptom of various neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease. This impairment probably is due to the vulnerability of the brain cells to increased oxidative stress during aging process. Many studies have shown that certain phenolic antioxidants attenuate neuronal cell death induced by oxidative stress. The present work was undertaken to assess the effect of ethanolic extract of Punica granatum seeds on cognitive performance of aged and scopolamine treated young mice using one trial step-down type passive avoidance and elevated plus maze task. Aged or scopolamine treated mice showed poor retention of memory in step-down type passive avoidance and in elevated plus maze task. Chronic administration (21 days) of Punica granatum extract and vitamin C significantly (p < 0.05) reversed the age induced or scopolamine induced retention deficits in both the paradigms. Punica granatum extract also significantly lowered lipid peroxidation level and increased antioxidant glutathione level in brain tissues. Punica granatum preparations could be protective in the treatment of cognitive disorders such as dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
PMCID: PMC2816527  PMID: 20162041
Punica granatum; Cognitive deficits; Vitamin C; Scopolamine; Antioxidants
7.  Whether Co-Administration of Garlic has Negative Influence on Scutellaria Baicalensis Georgi in Treating Models Rats with Pelvic Inflammation? 
The research was to explore whether co-administration of garlic has negative influence on Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi (Scutellaria baicalensis) in treating models rats with pelvic inflammation. Twelve model rats were randomized into a Scutellaria baicalensis group and a Scutellaria baicalensis+garlic group with six in each group for pharmacokinetic analysis. Twenty-four rats were randomized into a Scutellaria baicalensis group, a Scutellaria baicalensis+garlic group, a model control group and a normal control group with six rats in each group for detecting the serum levels of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) and interleukin 6 (IL-6) with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The results showed that in the Scutellaria baicalensis group, the maximum concentration (Cmax) of baicalin, area under the plasma concentration-time curve (AUC) and the time to Cmax (Tmax) were significantly higher and apparent clearance (CL/F) were significantly lower than those of Scutellaria baicalensis+garlic group. The serum levels of TNF-α and IL-6 in the Scutellaria baicalensis group were both significantly lower than Scutellaria baicalensis+garlic group. It was then concluded that garlic not only had negative influence on the absorption of active compounds in Scutellaria baicalensis, but decreased the curative effects of Scutellaria baicalensis in treating model rats with pelvic inflammation. Garlic should not be co-administered with Scutellaria baicalensis.
PMCID: PMC2816526  PMID: 20162048
Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi(Scutellaria baicalensi); garlic (Allium sativum); pharmacokinetics analysis
8.  Genetic Analysis of Aralia Cordata Thunb by RAPD 
In the research, genetic analysis of Aralia cordata Thunb. (Araliaceae) was conducted using randomly amplified polymorphism DNA (RAPD). 161 loci were detected with 12 RAPD primers. Percentage of Polymorphic Band (PPB) varied from 34.78% to 63.35%. All the samples were respectively collected from the eight provinces richest in Aralia cordata Thunb resources in China, including Hunan, Yunnan, Zhejiang, Sichuan, Jiangxi, Anhui, Shanxi and Gansu. The results showed that Hunan Province enjoyed the highest level of genetic differentiation and Gansu was the lowest. The total genetic diversity (HT) of RAPD, intraspecific genetic diversity (HS) and genetic diversity (DST) of the various places was respectively 26.33%, 11.14%, and 49.36%. The differentiation among the species accounted for 98.76% of total genetic diversity (GST). Based on the cluster results of genetic distance, the 8 samples were classified into three groups. It is concluded that Hunan Province enjoyed the highest level of genetic differentiation of Aralia cordata Thunb and Gansu was the lowest, which provides a basis for the taxonomic identification and germplasm resource research of Aralia cordata Thunb in the future.
PMCID: PMC2816525  PMID: 20162037
Genetic Analysis; Aralia cordata Thunb.; RAPD
9.  Contamination of Herbal Medicinal Products Marketed in Kaduna Metropolis with Selected Pathogenic Bacteria 
The study aimed to evaluate the bacterial contamination of powdered herbal medicinal preparations sourced from identified herbal retail outlets in different parts of Kaduna metropolis. The assessments of the contamination of the herbal products were carried out using standard procedures: total aerobic bacterial plate count, measurement of some physical parameters, isolation and characterization of selected bacterial pathogens etc. The results showed that out of a total of 150, 70 (46.67%) herbal remedies were contaminated with Salmonella typhi, twenty nine (19.33%) with Shigella spp. Eighty eight (58.67%) and 98 (65.33%) were contaminated with Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus, respectively. The total aerobic plate count results showed that the highest average count of > 5×107cfu/g was found in 89 (59.33%) of the preparations, while average plate count of ≤5×107cfu/g was found in 42 (28%) and no bacterial count was obtained in 19 (12.67%) of the preparations. Correlation was positive (P = 0.01; r = +0.109) between the physical parameters tested and the bacterial load. Antibacterial activities result of some common antibiotics showed that all the antibiotics had activities on the test bacterial isolates at various minimum inhibitory concentrations. Most traditionally prepared herbal medications in Kaduna state are likely to be contaminated with a wide variety of potentially pathogenic bacteria. The quality assurance of these products should be thoroughly enforced and monitored in the production and distribution of herbal preparations.
PMCID: PMC2816524  PMID: 20162044
Herbal preparations; Kaduna metropolis; bacterial contamination; antibacterial assessment
10.  Self Treatment of Eye Diseases in Malawi 
Self-treatment for eye diseases is very common in most developing countries yet there has been little investigation of such attitudes and practices. In many settings, people do not proceed beyond self-treatment and do not receive care from either traditional healers or Western eye care providers. Visual impairment and blindness can be the result. We conducted population-based survey of use of eye care services and self-treatment in two districts of Malawi. Adults were administered a detailed interview regarding their use of eye care services (Western and traditional as well as self-treatment) and their knowledge and use of traditional eye medicines. Self-treatment was defined as use of either Western or traditional medicines by the individual for their most recent eye condition. Only eye conditions that were considered severe by the study subjects were correlated with treatment options. Interviews were carried out among 800 adults in the study areas. Self-treatment was reported for the last episode of eye disease by 39.8% of the study population. Factors associated with self-treatment included sex, religion and socioeconomic status. Even though 76.8% of the respondents reported treatment from the health center or hospital to be the least expensive option, many opted for self-treatment first. Among those opting for self-treatment 72% used traditional eye medicines. Even among cases that individuals considered to be quite severe (these included cataract, trachoma and conjunctivitis), self-treatment was the option of choice in 22.2% of cases.
PMCID: PMC2816523  PMID: 20162038
eye diseases; Malawi; self-treatment; traditional eye medicine; health service utilization
11.  Antimicrobial Activity of Pentacyclic Triterpenes Isolated from Acacia Mellifera 
Acacia mellifera has been used widely in traditional African medicines against various diseases. Among the Kipsigis community of Kenya, water extracts from the plant is used for the treatment of skin diseases, coughs and gastrointestinal ailments. The aim of the study was to provide scientific rationale for the use of the plant in traditional medicine through bioassay-guided fractionation of A. mellifera stem bark. Bioactivity testing was done against selected microbes using disc diffusion technique as outlined in Clinical Laboratory Standard Institute (CLSI). Structure elucidation of the isolated compounds was based primarily on 1D and 2D NMR analyses, including HMQC, HMBC, and NOESY correlations. Fractionation yielded three triterpenoids; (20S)-oxolupane-30-al, (20R)-oxolupane-30-al, and betulinic acid. The three compounds were active against Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 25923 and only (20S)-oxolupane-30-al against clinical isolate of Microsporum gypseum. The three compounds had no activity against Escherichia coli ATCC 25922, Enterococcus feacalis, Candida albicans ATCC 90028, Cryptococcus neoformans, Trichophyton mentagrophyte, Candida krusei, Microsporum gypseum, and Sacharomyces cerevisiae. These results explain and support the use of A. mellifera stem barks for the treatment of infectious diseases in traditional Kenya medicine. It also shows that the antimicrobial activity is concentrated in the triterpenoid fractions.
PMCID: PMC2816522  PMID: 20162040
Acacia mellifera; Antimicrobial pentacyclic triterpenes; Kenya medicinal plant
12.  Anti Hyperglycemic Activities of Annona Muricata (Linn) 
This study was designed to determine the effects of methanolic extracts of Annona muricata (Linn) on the blood glucose level of streptozotocin-induced diabetic Wistar rats. Thirty adult Wistar rats were randomly assigned into three groups (A, B and C) of ten rats each. Group A was the control, Group B was untreated hyperglycemic group and group C was A. muricata-treated group. Hyperglycemia was induced in groups B and C by a single intraperitoneal injection of 80mg/kg streptozotocin dissolved in 0.1M citrate buffer. The control group was intraperitoneally injected with equivalent volume of citrate buffer and all the animals were monitored for four weeks. Daily intra peritoneal injection of 100mg/kg A. muricata was administered to group C rats for two weeks and the animals were monitored for another two weeks. The data obtained were analyzed with descriptive and inferential statistics. The result showed a mean body weight of 206 ± 7.74g, 173.29±5.13g and 197 ± 5.62g respectively for the control, untreated diabetic and A. muricata-treated diabetic group, and a mean blood glucose concentration of 3.78 ± 0.190 mmol/L, 21.64 ± 2.229mmol/L and 4.22 ± 0.151mmol/L for the control, untreated diabetic and treated diabetic groups respectively. A significant difference exists between the blood glucose concentrations of treated and untreated hyperglycemic groups of rats. The result of this study demonstrated that A. muricata possesses anti-hyperglycemic activities.
PMCID: PMC2816521  PMID: 20162043
Annona muricata; Diabetes mellitus; Streptozotocin; Blood glucose level; hyperglycemia
13.  Protective Role of Withaferin-A on Red Blood Cell Integrity During 7,12-Dimethylbenz[a]anthracene Induced Oral Carcinogenesis 
The aim of the present study was to investigate the protective effect of Withaferin-A on red blood cell integrity during 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) induced oral carcinogenesis. The protective effect of Withaferin-A was assessed by measuring the status of glycoconjugates, membrane bound enzyme activity and red blood cell osmotic fragility. Oral squamous cell carcinoma was induced in the buccal pouch of Syrian golden hamsters by painting with 0.5% DMBA in liquid paraffin thrice a week for 14 weeks. The levels of glycoconjugates, membrane bound enzyme activity, osmotic fragility and thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) were analyzed by using specific colorimetric methods. We observed 100% tumor formation in DMBA painted hamsters. Increase in plasma glycoconjugates at the expense of red blood cell membrane glycoconjugates levels were observed in DMBA painted hamsters as compared to control hamsters. Erythrocytes from DMBA painted hamsters were more fragile than those from control hamsters. The activity of membrane bound enzyme (Na+ K+ ATPase) decreased whereas TBARS level was increased in DMBA painted hamsters as compared to control hamsters. Oral administration of Withaferin-A at a dose of 20mg kg−1 bw significantly prevented the tumor formation as well as normalized the biochemical variables in DMBA painted hamsters. Our results thus demonstrate the protective effect of Withaferin-A on red blood cell integrity during DMBA induced oral carcinogenesis.
PMCID: PMC2816520  PMID: 20162047
DMBA; Withaferin-A; Oral cancer; glycoconjugates; osmotic fragility
14.  Protective Effect of Withaferin-A on Micronucleus Frequency and Detoxication Agents During Experimental Oral Carcinogenesis 
Our aim was to investigate the effect of Withaferin-A on bone marrow micronucleus frequency and buccal mucosa detoxication agents during 7, 12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) induced hamster buccal pouch carcinogenesis. Oral squamous cell carcinoma was developed in hamsters' buccal pouches by painting 0.5% DMBA in liquid paraffin, three times per week for 14 weeks. We observed 100% tumor formation in DMBA painted hamsters. Elevated frequency of bone marrow micronucleated polychromatic erythrocytes (MnPCEs) and decrease in buccal mucosa phase II detoxication agents were noticed in tumor bearing hamsters. Oral administration of Withaferin-A significantly reduced the micronucleus frequency and brought back the status of phase II detoxication agents in DMBA painted hamsters. Our study thus demonstrated the protective effect of Withaferin-A on DMBA-induced micronucleus frequency in the bone marrow of golden Syrian hamsters. Also, Withaferin-A maintained the status of buccal mucosa detoxication agents during DMBA-induced hamster buccal pouch carcinogenesis.
PMCID: PMC2816519  PMID: 20162035
Withaferin-A; DMBA; Oral cancer; Micronucleus; Detoxication
15.  Antinociceptive and Antiinflammatory Effects of Essential Oil of Dennettia Tripetala G.Baker (Annonaceae) in Rodents 
In this study we evaluated the analgesic and anti- inflammatory activities of the essential oil (EO) of the fruits of Dennettia tripetala in rodents. The plant is a tropical African plant and the fruits are commonly eaten as spices and consumed as a stimulant, and its various parts are used in the treatment of fever, cough and as anti-emetics.The analgesic effects of the oil was assessed in mice using the hot plate, acetic acid-induced writhings and formalin test, while carrageenan-induced paw oedema was used to study the antiinflammatory effects in rats. The EO at 25–50 mg/kg exhibited significant (p<0.05) antinociceptive effects comparable to a potent opioid agonist, morphine (10 mg/kg) and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as, aspirin (100 mg/kg) and indomethacin (80 mg/kg). The antinociceptive effect of the EO was also blocked by naloxone (2 mg/kg) in all the models used. The EO demonstrated significant (p<0.05) anti-inflammatory effect in the carrageenan-induced paw oedema model of inflammation that is also comparable to dexamethasone (1 mg/kg) The results showed that the essential oil of D.tripetala possesses significant antinociceptive and antiinflammatory effects in the animal models used. The results also suggest that the analgesic effects may be mediated both centrally as well as peripherally, while the antiinflammatory activity may be effective in both early and late phases of inflammation. The results obtained may therefore be used to rationalize the use of the plant in the treatment of pain and fever in traditional medicine.
PMCID: PMC2816588  PMID: 20161957
Dennettia tripetala; Essential Oil; Antinociceptive; Anti-inflammatory and Rodents
16.  Ethnobotanical Survey of Anti-Asthmatic Plants in South Western Nigeria 
The paper presents the results of an ethnobotanical survey of plants used in the treatment of asthma in Ogun, Osun and Oyo states. Twenty markets were visited and forty-six plants belonging to thirty-three different families were collected. The plants' families represented in the collection include, Amaryllidaceae, Apocynaceae, Combretaceae, Euphorbiaceae, Moraceae, Solanaceae, Zingiberaceae and others. Most of the herbs were prescribed along with other recipes, mono-prescription was rare. Modes of administration of the phytomedicines were concoction, decoctions and powdered ash residue.
PMCID: PMC2816587  PMID: 20161955
Asthma; ethnobotanical survey; phytomedicines; Southwestern Nigeria
17.  Evaluation of a Safer Male Circumcision Training Programme for Traditional Surgeons and Nurses in the Eastern Cape, South Africa 
Training designed to improve circumcision knowledge, attitude and practice was delivered over 5 days to 34 traditional surgeons and 49 traditional nurses in the Eastern Cape, South Africa. Training included the following topics: initiation rites; statutory regulation of traditional male circumcision and initiation into Manhood (TCIM); structure and function of the male sex organs; procedure of safe circumcision, infection control; sexually transmitted infections (STIs); HIV/AIDS; infection control measures; aftercare of the initiate including after care of the circumcision wound and initiate as a whole; detection and early management of common complications of circumcision; nutrition and fluid management; code of conduct and ethics; and sexual health education. The evaluation of the training consisted of a prospective assessment of knowledge and attitude immediately prior to and after training. Significant improvement in knowledge and/or attitudes was observed in legal aspects, STI, HIV and environmental aspects, attitudes in terms of improved collaboration with biomedical health care providers, normal and abnormal anatomy and physiology, sexually transmitted infections and including HIV, circumcision practice and aftercare of initiates. We concluded that safer circumcision training can be successfully delivered to traditional surgeons and nurses.
PMCID: PMC2816586  PMID: 20161956
Evaluation; training programme; safer male circumcision; knowledge; attitudes; traditional surgeons; traditional nurses; Eastern Cape; South Africa
18.  Patients Consulting Traditional Health Practioners in the Context of HIV/AIDS in Urban Areas in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa 
The purpose of this study is to assess patients consulting full-time traditional health practitioners (THPs) and the practice of THPs after they had been trained on Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)/ Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI) prevention and care. The sample included 222 patients interviewed when exiting a THP's practice (n=17) in purposefully chosen two urban sites in KwaZulu-Natal. Results indicate that at post training evaluation the majority of the THPs were involved in HIV/STI management and most had low levels of HIV risk practices at the workplace. Major self-reported reasons for consulting the THP included a complex of supernatural or psychosocial problems, chronic conditions, acute conditions, generalized pain, HIV and other STIs. Overall, patients including HIV positive (n=18) patients had moderate knowledge of Antiretroviral Therapy (ART). A number of HIV positive patients were using traditional medicine and ART concurrently, dropped out of ART because of side effects and were using traditional medicine for HIV.
PMCID: PMC2816585  PMID: 20161959
Patients; traditional health practitioners; HIV/AIDS management; KwaZulu-Natal; South Africa
20.  Anti-Tumor Activity of Four Ayurvedic Herbs in Dalton Lymphoma Ascites Bearing Mice and Their Short-Term In Vitro Cytotoxicity on DLA-Cell-Line 
The anti-tumor activity and chemopreventive potential of four Ayurvedic herbs viz. Curcuma longa L., Ocimum sanctum L., Tinospora cordifolia (Wild) Miers ex Hook.f & Thomas and Zizyphus mauritiana Lam. were evaluated using Dalton Lymphoma ascites (DLA) tumor model in Swiss Albino mice. The outcome was assessed using survival time, peritoneal ascitic fluid (Tumor volume) and hematological indices as parameters. Animals were divided into five groups (n = 6) viz. one DLA control and four Herb + DLA treated groups. All the four herb + DLA groups were pre-treated with respective herbs for 7 days and hematological indices were measured for entire five groups. On day-8 animals were inoculated with 1×106 DLA cells i.p., and Herb + DLA groups were continued with oral herbal treatment for 21-days. Hematological parameters and tumor volume were assessed to find the effects of herbs. Short term in vitro cytotoxicity was determined by Trypan Blue exclusion method and LDH leakage assay using different concentrations of herbal extracts and 5-FU as a positive control and IC50 for each herbal extract and 5-FU were determined. Oral administration of crude herb increased the survival time and decreased the peritoneal ascitic fluid content significantly. Hb, RBCs and total WBC which were altered by DLA inoculation were restored significantly by all the herbs except O. sanctum. All the four herbs showed in vitro cytotoxic activity against DLA cell-line. Moreover inter group comparison of all the four herbs for anti-tumor activity showed efficacy in the following order- T. cordifolia > Z. mauritiana ≥ C. longa > O. sanctum respectively.
PMCID: PMC2816583  PMID: 20161965
Curcuma longa; Ocimum sanctum; Tinospora cordifolia; Zizyphus mauritiana; DLA cell line; Cytotoxicity; Anti-tumor activity
21.  Effect of Cycloart-24-en-3β-ol from Euphorbia Royleana Latex on Neuroenzyme AChE and Oxidative Metabolism of Freshwater Fish, Channa Punctatus 
Cycloart-24-en-3β-ol isolated from Euphorbia royleana latex possesses potent piscicidal activity against freshwater predatory fish Channa punctatus. Their short as well as long-term exposure causes significant (P<0.05) time and dose-dependent reversible alteration in the oxidative metabolism of the fish Channa punctatus Cycloart-24-en-3β-ol also shifts fish respiratory pathway, inhibits energy production and AChE activity reversibly may be advantageous for their use as environmentally safe piscicide for controlling the predatory fish C. punctatus population from carp culture ponds.
PMCID: PMC2816582  PMID: 20161954
Cycloart-24-en-3β-ol; Triterpenoid; Euphorbia royleana; AChE; Oxidative metabolism; Channa punctatus
22.  Antibacterial Activity of Some Folklore Medicinal Plants from South India 
Antibacterial activity and phytochemical tests of eight whole plant methanol extracts belonging to family Euphorbiaceae were evaluated. In agar well diffusion assay the diameter of inhibition zones ranged from 3–13 mm. Phyllanthus emblica showed maximum activity of 13 mm. The MIC and MBC observed were 30–140 mcg/ml and 40–160 mcg/ml, respectively. P. piscatorum and P. emblica showed the lowest MIC (30 mcg/ml), P. emblica the lowest MBC (40 mcg/ml) and thus an effective inhibitor of the tested bacteria. Alkaloids, saponins and tannins were detected in 7 out of 8 tested plants.
PMCID: PMC2816581  PMID: 20161967
Plant extracts; Antibacterial activity; MIC; MBC; Phytochemical tests
23.  Induced Differentiation of Hepatocellular Carcinoma by Natural Products 
Hepatocellular carcinoma is one of the most common malignant tumors worldwide. For the difficulty of the giving sufficient dose because of the poor liver function and the low sensitivity of hepatoma cells for the chemotherapeutic agents, chemotherapy adds little to overall survival of hepatocellular carcinoma patients. The induction of terminal differentiation in tumor cells represents a possible therapeutic strategy with less toxicity. Gekko sulfated polysaccharides, isoverbascoside, Ginsenoside-Rh2, Camptothecin, 9-nitro-camptothecin, tachyplesin, Matrine, tylophorine, 7-OH-4-CH (3)- coumarin and arsenic trioxide are known to have a differentiation-inducing capability on hepatocellular carcinoma in vitro and/or in vivo. Although the therapeutic effect of the differentiation-inducing agents may not be potent when compared with that of conventional chemotherapeutic agents, they have multiple therapeutic targets, low toxicity and less probability of drug resistance. More data are required on the molecular mechanisms of therapeutic effects, dose response and potential toxicities.
PMCID: PMC2816580  PMID: 20161953
Differentiation; hepatocellular carcinoma; herb
24.  Antimicrobial Activity of Various Extracts of Ocimum Basilicum L. and Observation of the Inhibition Effect on Bacterial Cells by Use of Scanning Electron Microscopy 
The antimicrobial activities of chloroform, acetone and two different concentrations of methanol extracts of Ocimum basilicum L. were studied. These extracts were tested in vitro against 10 bacteria and 4 yeasts strains by the disc diffusion method. The results indicated that the methanol extracts of O. basilucum exhibited the antimicrobial activity against tested microorganisms. While the chloroform and acetone extracts had no effect, the methanol extracts showed inhibition zones against strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Shigella sp., Listeria monocytogenes, Staphylococcus aureus and two different strains of Escherichia coli. The cells of microorganisms, which were treated and untreated with plant extracts, were observed by using the scanning electron microscope. It was observed that the treated cells were damaged.
PMCID: PMC2816579  PMID: 20161958
Antimicrobial activity; Disc diffusion method; Ocimum basilicum; Plant extract; SEM; Spices
25.  Antimicrobial Activity of Essential Oils of Xylopia Aethiopica 
Xylopia aethiopica is a medicinal plant of great repute in West Africa which produces a variety of complex chemical compounds. The fresh and dried fruits, leaf, stem bark and root bark essential oils showed various degrees of activity against the Gram positive bacteria, Bacillus subtilis and Staphylococcus aureus, the Gram negative bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa and the yeast-like fungus Candida albicans, using the cup plate method,. However, none of the oils showed activity against Escherichia coli.
PMCID: PMC2816578  PMID: 20161962
Xylopia aethiopica; Annonaceae; Essential oils; Antimicrobial activity

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